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Celebrating Halloween in Tokyo: 2019 Guide
Celebrating Halloween here is a unique experience for the whole family! It's still a relatively new holiday and many traditions have a decidedly Japanese twist on them, but that doesn't mean Halloween isn't a whole lot of fun.
Check out our 2019 Halloween Guide for information on how to make the most of the holiday this year.
Trick-or-Treat and Parades
Japanese customs on etiquette and personal space mean that taking your children to your neighbors' homes to demand candy is out of the question. However, several shopping districts and neighborhoods host official trick-or-treat adjacent festivities the kids (and you) will love.
Entire Month of October
From a special Van Gogh exhibit at the Ueno National Museum to a costume parade and trick-or-treating on 26 October, Shitamachi Halloween offers plenty of opportunities to celebrate for the whole family.
A very specific celebration! All participants in this parade must be dressed as cats.
In previous years, kids had the opportunity to create costumes and collect stamps and candies from participating stores, as well as take part in a themed parade.
This is the event for the manga and anime enthusiast in your household. More than 20,000 cosplayers are expected to participate. It's free to spectate, but there is a fee for dressing up.
Parades, costume contests, dance performances and more make this event a family-friendly must.
Kawasaki Halloween Parade
More than 100,000 people are expected to turn out for this annual tradition, where thousands more will parade in front of the crowd in silly, spooky and saucy costumes.
Omotesando Pumpkin Parade
A costume parade (for kids under 12) and candy doled out by local shops make this a no-brainer for Halloween celebrations.
A stroller-friendly parade and trick-or-treating at local shops make this two-day festival perfect for families with small children.
This international neighborhood's shotengai hosts an annual trick-or-treat event and encourages participants to come dressed in their best costumes.
You can definitely count on Japan's biggest theme parks to get in on the Halloween action! In addition to the usual rides and mascots, you can expect tons of spooky (and cute!) additions.
Universal Studios Japan
6 September - 4 November
Run from zombies, or dance with them, during the very spooky themed event at Universal Studios. From haunted gardens to a trick-or-treat parades, the scares run the gamut. Several attractions are a bit too creepy for younger kids, so make sure to double-check age restrictions ahead of your visit.
Tokyo Disneyland & DisneySea
10 September - 31 October
From Halloween-themed parades to decorations, menu items and merchandise, Tokyo Disneyland and DisneySea transform for the holiday. You can even join in on the fun by dressing up as your favorite spooky Disney character.
13 September - 31 October
Join the park's usual cast of characters for this special masquerade parade, in addition to special photo opps with costumed mascots and a haunted house. By night, the park becomes a bit scarier thanks to a special collaboration with the new movie IT: Chapter Two.
For Grown Ups
Halloween in Japan is very much a holiday adults can get in on celebrating. From themed parties at bars and clubs to music festivals to especially scary haunted attractions at theme parks, there's no shortage of opportunities for grown ups to have fun.
The most famous Halloween tradition for adults in Japan is the outdoor, free-for-all costume party held near Shibuya station. Each year, hundreds of thousands of people flock to "Scramble Crossing" to show off their outfits. Unfortunately, the large crowds have also drawn mischief in the past, leading to this year's ban on the consumption of alcohol in public. It will still undoubtedly be a sight to see, though, so if you're feeling adventurous, schedule a babysitter for the evening and head to Shibuya to check out the crazy costumes!